Balanced Trade – Future Komp Thu, 30 Dec 2021 16:49:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Balanced Trade – Future Komp 32 32 A Shore Thing: not enough money to “hold back the sea”, but defense is possible Thu, 30 Dec 2021 16:00:00 +0000

Auckland has 3,200 km of coastline, and as sea levels rise and cliffs erode, some 17,600 homes in the area are at risk. A shore thing is a Things series that speaks to people whose properties are under threat, to scientists trying to warn us, and engineers trying to hold back the ocean.

Over the past five years, Auckland Council has spent over $ 5.5 million on new large coastal defense structures.

These include a $ 2.35 million project to replace the mudcrete groynes that protect Shelly Beach in Kaipara, a $ 950,000 effort to build two new groynes and protect the masonry seawall at Huia Estate. in Waitākere, and an effort of $ 680,000 to strengthen the Te Atatū dike.

Other coastal defenses have been built by developers and landowners, which often, when completed, become the responsibility of the council to maintain.

* A “cursed” village in Wales will be abandoned to the sea
* Climate explained: why coastal flooding becomes more frequent as the sea rises
* Houses of 240,000 Kiwis in worst-case sea level rise in 2100, study finds

One of the largest projects where work continues is the remodeling of the Muriwai dune.

Muriwai experiences big swells and shorter, more aggressive waves generated by the Tasman Sea.

Chris McKeen / Stuff

Muriwai experiences big swells and shorter, more aggressive waves generated by the Tasman Sea.

Natasha Carpenter, responsible for coastal management practices at the council, says that since the 1960s the beach has lost about 65 meters of land.

“It threatened some of the park infrastructure that we had in place here, particularly the south parking lot, the toilet block and the road.”

The beach experiences large swells and short, aggressive waves generated by the Tasman Sea, and as threats increase so do the population. The continued development means that 2,500 people now live in the region.

Natasha Carpenter, responsible for coastal management practices at Auckland Council, Muriwai Beach.

Chris McKeen / Stuff

Natasha Carpenter, responsible for coastal management practices at Auckland Council, Muriwai Beach.

In an example of a managed retreat, the southern parking lot at Muriwai was moved back 40 meters.

Over 4,000 cubic meters of sand have also been moved to reshape the beach and create a safe pathway, and the dunes have been planted with more resilient plants that better capture and hold windblown sand.

Carpenter says that a five-year project recently launched by the council is a testament to the fact that not everything can be protected.

Instead, creating shoreline adaptation plans for 16 coastal regions will prioritize council assets to be safeguarded.

Muriwai lost around 65 meters of land due to coastal erosion.

Chris McKeen / Stuff

Muriwai lost around 65 meters of land due to coastal erosion.

The plans will take into account private ownership, as how homes are protected and who is responsible for their protection will not be known until the new Resource Management Law and the Law on Resource Management come into force. adaptation to climate change.

Carpenter says the board is trying to find a balanced response because protecting everything isn’t an option.

Some defenses that people may take for granted may not be maintained in the future, she says, as science and experience find that some inherited structures may be less important to maintain than others.

Carpenter says some old sea defenses may not be maintained in the future as the council prioritizes different jobs.

Chris McKeen / Stuff

Carpenter says some old sea defenses may not be maintained in the future as the council prioritizes different jobs.

Cannot “hold back the sea”

Council Technical Resilience Officer Ross Roberts says you can’t ‘hold back’ – there just isn’t enough money available to do it.

“If we were Singapore with a very small coastline and a fairly wealthy population compared to that coastline, then you can invest more and do different things.

“We have to choose very wisely where we spend the money to make sure we get the most out of it. “

The budget for coastal renewals is slowly increasing, although it has declined due to Covid-19, from $ 3.5 million to $ 11 million next year.

Roberts says the amount spent on renewing and creating new defenses (which are addressed with a business case on a case-by-case basis) is likely to increase in the future.

A pedestrian and vehicular access route is threatened by erosion in Muriwai.

Chris McKeen / Stuff

A pedestrian and vehicular access route is threatened by erosion in Muriwai.

New materials may be needed

Roberts says the physics aren’t changing, so many of the old methods of coastal defense would likely stay the same.

However, since so much depends on concrete, which produces a lot of greenhouse gases during its manufacture and transport, the materials used may need to change.

“We don’t want to defend ourselves against climate change by building things that create more climate change. So it’s a consideration that is high on our priority list at the moment.

“It’s fair to say that no organization anywhere can control the situation. Nobody has the whole situation in hand, ”says Roberts.

Roberts says anyone looking to buy property should consider the dangers, whether it’s earthquakes or rising sea levels.

“Everyone has a role to play in making sure they are ready for the future. “

Every mitigation has a trade-off

Paula Blackett, an environmental and social scientist at Niwa, says that while cost is usually a big factor, it’s not the only limitation when it comes to mitigating erosion.

“Every adaptation has a compromise. If you build a seawall you will protect the property behind it, but you will lose the beach, ”she says.

Paula Blackett, an environmental social scientist in Niwa, said communities will need to weigh the pros and cons of erosion mitigation versus managed withdrawal.  (File photo)

Stuart MacKay, Niwa / Supplied

Paula Blackett, an environmental social scientist in Niwa, said communities will need to weigh the pros and cons of erosion mitigation versus managed withdrawal. (File photo)

Levees can impact nearby areas as well, as waves bounce off the hard structure and won’t last forever, Blackett says.

“As the sea rises the wall becomes less effective and you have to do something else because you can’t build mega walls everywhere. “

Groynes can have limited effectiveness, while even gentle work like beach replenishment can negatively impact the beach where the sand comes from, Blackett explains.

“It’s really, really important to think about how effective they will be and how long they will last with rising sea levels. Indeed, we are leaving it to future generations to make some really tough decisions.

University of Auckland coastal scientist Dr Mark Dickson agrees that every mitigation comes at a cost, including the lack of information on the environmental effects of sand mining and replenishment.

“A wide range of coastal engineering options have been tried around the world to stop coastal erosion, and while there are examples of success, there are also many examples of problems, including long sections of coast in places like the UK and Japan, and elsewhere, where beaches have been lost or significantly reduced in size.

Most defenses will last less than 50 years, but they can give people false confidence, leading to more, higher-value coastal properties – increasing overall risk, he says.

Is Dickson therefore advocating a managed retreat rather than building coastal defenses? Not necessarily, but constantly updated adaptive planning will be necessary, he says.

“Another change that I think is needed in our conversations about coastal management is a shift from a binary ‘retreat or defense’ position. For many coastal sites, we will probably end up switching from one management option to another.

He gives the example of a community using beach food to save time to plan a managed retreat – where houses could be moved when erosion reaches a certain threshold.

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Nickel Comes Back to $ 20,000 As Traders Turn to Fundamentals Mon, 27 Dec 2021 04:28:36 +0000

The price of nickel has rebounded to $ 20,000 as trading is still moderate with the London Metal Exchange shutting down for the Christmas holidays and base metals markets have been keeping a close watch on the spread of the Covid-19 Omicron variant.

The benchmark nickel futures contract on the London Metal Exchange closed 0.12% at $ 20,045 per metric tonne on Christmas Eve, after fluctuating between $ 19,240 and $ 19,950 over the two last few weeks. The LME is closed until Tuesday.

Prospects for increased supply as an energy crisis eases in China have allowed smelters to ramp up production and the Chinese group Tsingshan, which started producing nickel in Indonesia, held down the price of nickel not far from its one-month low in mid-November, according to economic data supplier, Trading Economics.

Slow demand, low stocks

On the demand side, demand for stainless steel and nickel sulfate is expected to be weak, according to Shanghai Metal Market in its Monday note. Nickel sulfate is the key ingredient in producing cathodes for lithium-ion batteries.

However, low inventory in warehouses at the LME and Shanghai Future Exchange supported the price.

The Global Palladium Fund has estimated that the global nickel market will experience a surplus of 59 kilotons (KT) in 2022, from a likely deficit of 150 KT this year.

Surplus market

The surplus will be concentrated in low-grade nickel pig iron (NPI) and will be highly dependent on an expected increase in supply from Indonesia, specialist physical metals supplier Exchange Traded Commodities (ETC) said in an email last week.

A surplus would be a particularly welcome outcome for stainless steel makers, who depend on nickel for production, as well as for manufacturers of electric vehicle batteries, although this requires higher quality nickel for which supply prospects are less certain, the company said.

“Next year will really be a two-nickel story, as for high quality nickel the situation looks more balanced, with less prospect of increasing supply in the short term and the likelihood of a growing deficit at as demand for electric vehicle batteries in particular increases, ”said Timothy Harvey, Business Development Manager for the Global Palladium Fund.


Read more: Better commodity investments: will demand continue in 2022?

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Inaugural Single Malt from GlenWyvis, the first whiskey made in Dingwall in a century Fri, 24 Dec 2021 19:10:18 +0000

The GlenWyvis Distillery, owned by the Scottish community, recently launched its very first Scotch single malt whiskey.

A total of 3,600 individually numbered bottles of the three-year-old GlenWyvis Highland Single Malt Scotch Whiskey have been allocated to the shareholders of GlenWyvis Distillery, those whose investment has enabled the construction and development of the distillery.

Another 2,000 bottles were available for pre-order in October 2020 and sold out almost immediately. Another 200 bottles are now available at selected local retailers and business premises across Scotland.

the three-year-old GlenWyvis Highland Single Malt Scotch whiskey (image via GlenWyvis)

Made from a batch of 18 barrels, including 15 ex-Tennessee first whiskeys (80%), two ex-Moscatel first fillers (15%) and a Hogshead refill (5%), the grain-forward whiskey showcases the unique fruitiness of extra-long fermentation. The whiskey is 50% ABV, unfiltered, no added coloring.

The distiller’s notes show that the nose of the whiskey is light and floral with a hint of malty sweetness. The palate brings an explosion of stone fruits, giving way to brown sugar, with a lingering vanilla finish balanced with ripe orchard fruits.

GlenWyvis Highland Single Malt Scotch was the first whiskey produced in Dingwall for almost a hundred years, with the last whiskey distillery, Ben Wyvis, closing in 1926.

Matthew Farmer, Distillery Manager at GlenWyvis Distillery, said in a prepared statement that their journey over the past few years and the founding of GlenWyvis Distillery is in part for the many shareholders, “So it is fitting that they are among the first to try our first whiskey. The 2018 18-barrel distillation produced a delicious young whiskey that brings you so close to the grain – it’s the first step, and it’s pure GlenWyvis.

Chairman of the Board, David Graham, said current and past directors will join him in expressing their pride and admiration for the dedicated team at GlenWyvis for reaching the milestone in the production of the first whiskey. of Dingwall in nearly 100 years.

“Our small team has worked with passion to produce a fantastic product for all of our shareholders and customers, and I look forward to harvesting a drink for each of them and for the future of the GlenWyvis Distillery,” he said. he declares.

The design of GlenWyvis whiskey bottles is inspired by the region, with the contours of each bottle making a map of Ben Wyvis, the mountain that serves as the backdrop to the distillery. The bottle also features birds, red kites, a fork-tailed bird of prey that is often seen around the distillery and surrounding areas. In addition, the bottle is finished with a natural cork stopper and all of its packaging is recyclable.

Nestled under the Mace of Ben Wyvis in the Scottish Highlands, the GlenWyvis Distillery was established in 2015. The idea was to unite the community of Dingwall through the creation of a distillery owned primarily by the locals. Over 3,000 like-minded people invested in GlenWyvis to create the 100% community-owned distillery.

For more information on GlenWyvis Highland Single Malt Scotch Whiskey, check out

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FIEO sees $ 460 billion to $ 475 billion in exports for next fiscal year amid COVID-19 woes Thu, 23 Dec 2021 10:23:45 +0000

The Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO) said on Thursday that taking a conservative approach, it will target $ 460 billion to $ 475 billion in exports in the next fiscal year due to the emergence of new variants of the coronavirus and existing challenges on the supply side.

In 2021-2022, exports are expected to reach $ 400 billion, said EIFE President A Sakthivel.

He said the dramatic increase in world trade of around 22%, supported by high commodity prices, as in 2021, will not be there to provide the tailwind for Indian exports.

Much will also depend on the world’s ability to contain COVID-19 through mass vaccination across the globe and create the required vaccine manufacturing capacity.

“Regarding the emergence of the new variants and the challenges on the supply side at this point, we would like to be a little conservative and aim for an export of $ 460 billion to $ 475 billion in the next fiscal year,” a- he added.

He also expressed hope that global consumption would increase significantly in 2022, despite the pandemic being brought under control.

“The good thing with our exports has been very balanced growth across sectors both in traditional exports as well as in booming export sectors during the current fiscal year.

“We hope that the same trend will continue, especially since the order position of all exporters is extremely encouraging and the policy of China plus one of the global companies is definitely helping our exports,” he added. .

Also next year, the EIFE estimates that export growth will be generalized and that exports to NAFTA, Europe, the Middle East and Oceania will continue to grow, especially since “we should consider “to soon conclude free trade agreements with the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates and similar pacts with Canada and Australia in 2022.

“In addition, with rising input prices, skyrocketing freight and delays in shipments and payments have resulted in the need for additional credit.

Although the container shortage has eased due to peak season supply for Christmas, New Year and Chinese New Year, the same is likely to worsen once countries open after the holidays, especially if the new variant is not mastered, ”Sakthivel mentioned.

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Russia alone did not destabilize Ukraine Sun, 19 Dec 2021 16:51:22 +0000

Ukraine is in a worse situation than ever – now facing the threat of massing Russian troops on its border. The accepted wisdom is that seven years ago former Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovych sought to sell his country under a trade deal with Russia instead of joining the European Union as a member associate. This led to the Maidan Square democratic movement, which forced Yanukovych out of power. In response, Russia invaded Crimea and started a civil war in eastern Ukraine. Today Ukraine is trying to repel Russian aggression, calling on Washington and NATO to step in and protect its nascent democracy from Russian threats and intimidation.

This is not quite the whole story. The consensus view conveniently ignores how EU and US diplomacy actually paved the way for Ukraine’s destabilization and break-up. By playing their game in the EU’s negotiations with Ukraine, Brussels diplomats, backed by Washington, ended up offering Vladimir Putin a golden opportunity to reclaim Crimea and destabilize Ukraine’s development towards the democracy. Without Brussels’ excessive negotiating demands, mainly on governance issues, the breakup of Ukraine could have been avoided, along with all the negative consequences that have since ensued. As Ukraine has acquired associate status with the EU, it has paid a heavy price for its membership: the occupation of Crimea, the stalemate of the civil war in the Donbass and 14,000 lives lost. How Ukraine has come to this point holds important lessons for Western allies in dealing with the current crisis.

The real story begins with Yanukovych, an ethnic Russian, who was elected president of Ukraine in 2010 by barely a third of the country’s voters, mostly from the Russian-speaking regions, Donbass and Crimea. According to Freedom House, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe estimated that “the vote met most international standards for democratic elections and consolidated the progress made since 2004”.

After his election, the challenge for the new president was to negotiate a possible EU membership, while facing competing demands from Russia for a closer trade relationship. In walking this tightrope, Yanukovych had to fight against divided Ukrainian public opinion. EU aid has been concentrated more in the western regions of Ukraine than in the ethnic Russian regions. According to independent polls up to August 2013, only 42 percent of the electorate supported the EU-Ukraine association agreement, while 31 percent preferred a customs union agreement with Russia.

Despite polls showing less than majority support for a Russian or European deal, Yanukovych has resolutely sought EU membership. Today, it is widely forgotten that he initialed an association agreement with Brussels in March 2012. At the same time, Yanukovych openly opposed joining the Russian Customs Union. In response, Russian pressure has grown increasingly heavy. Moscow opened a trade war against Ukraine in 2013. When Putin visited Kiev in July 2013, he did not even speak to Yanukovych as the two stood side by side during official ceremonies.

In public speeches at the time, Yanukovych defiantly reaffirmed his determination to finalize the deal with the EU, including enacting the controversial judicial and governance reforms demanded by Brussels regarding the rule of law, independent media and law enforcement. The Ukrainian parliament has adopted a series of reforms by a two-thirds majority to ensure broad parliamentary support for the changes requested by Brussels.

Yanukovych had also come under pressure from Brussels to end the criminal prosecution of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko for his negotiation of the controversial 2009 gas deal with Russia. The court’s conviction of Tymoshenko in 2011 and his sentence to seven years’ imprisonment have become the focus of the EU’s demands. Brussels has warned that Tymoshenko’s treatment threatens the initialed trade deal, which is slated for formal signing on November 29, 2013 in Lithuania. As a condition of signing, Brussels insisted on Tymoshenko’s release from prison for medical treatment abroad. This demand turned out to be a very difficult pill for Ukraine’s domestic politics to swallow.

Ukraine has started to seriously destabilize. On November 21, the parliament did not pass motions for the release of Tymoshenko’s medical treatment, which means that the EU’s demand could not be met. On the same day, the Yanukovych government desperately issued a decree calling for three-way negotiations between Ukraine, the EU and Russia to settle any issues between the competing blocs. Yet at this point Yanukovych didn’t seem to hesitate. On the very day when the parliament did not approve the release of Tymoshenko, he reaffirmed that “an alternative to reforms in Ukraine and an alternative to European integration do not exist … We are walking in this path and not let’s not change direction “.

Adding to the pressure, over the next few days the Maidan protests began, largely covered by Western media. Thousands of people, mostly Western Ukrainians, took to the streets of Kiev, protesting, often violently, against any backtracking on the finalization of the Association Agreement with the EU and calling for greater democracy in the western one.

On November 26, 2013, cracks in Yanukovych’s resolve to move forward with Brussels emerged. While attending the EU summit at the end of November, the association agreement was not signed. Acknowledging that Russia had asked Ukraine to delay the signing, he again called for further negotiations with the EU on its terms. Yanukovych also asked Brussels for substantial compensation to make up for any lost trade costs with Russia if Ukraine goes ahead with Brussels. Finally, he again called for three-way talks between Ukraine, Russia and the EU to attempt to diplomatically resolve all outstanding issues and controversies. The EU refused to participate in any three-way process and instead demanded that Yanukovych sign the trade deal immediately. The President of the European Commission, José Manuel, has declared that the EU will not tolerate “the veto of a third country”.

From that moment on, the Ukrainian government began to break up. The Maidan Square movement has taken on an increasingly revolutionary air with the United States openly fanning the flames of opposition to Yanukovych, the president-elect. Notwithstanding article 41 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations which calls on diplomats “not to interfere in (…) internal affairs”, the American Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs has appeared openly in December 2018 in Maidan Square with the American Ambassador. They encouraged peaceful protests against the elected ruling government, even handing out pastries to protesters and security forces.

In February 2014, as European and American diplomats sought to negotiate a transitional solution between opposition activists and Yanukovych, the situation on the streets of Kiev continued to deteriorate. Clashes between protesters and riot police grew increasingly out of control with more than 130 dead, including eighteen police officers.

On February 22, 2014, Yanukovych fled Kiev as an angry mob ransacked his official residence. On the same day, the Ukrainian parliament relieved Yanukovych of his powers as president, declaring that he had stepped down from power and that he “was not fulfilling his obligations”. Parliament has set a new presidential election for May 25, 2014, and an interim government has been put in place. Finally yielding to the demands of the EU, the government released Tymoshenko from prison. Police quickly changed their loyalty, saying they now stood “alongside the people”. The military and security services followed suit, announcing that they would not oppose the popular will.

Russia protested against the violent overthrow of Yanukovych. After seeing ethnic Ukrainians, with the open support of the US and the EU, forced democratically elected Yanukovych out of office, Putin moved from diplomacy to considering other options to ensure the protection of interests. of Russia, knowing that Washington and Brussels had no military cards to play. . On February 23, the day after the Ukrainian parliament’s action against Yanukovych, pro-Russian protests broke out in Sevastopol, Crimea. Days later, on February 27, masked and uninsigned Russian troops seized control of the Crimean parliament and quickly occupied strategic locations throughout the region without significant military or civilian resistance.

A majority of Crimea may well have supported the arrival of Russia, content to break with Ukraine. In a 2001 Ukrainian census, 65 percent of Crimeans were considered ethnic Russians, with only 15.7 percent identifying as Ukrainians. In a 2008 poll conducted by the Ukrainian Center for Economic and Political Studies, 63.8% of all Crimeans supported Ukraine’s succession and accession to Russia. In a series of polls conducted by a United Nations between 2009 and 2011, a majority of 65 to 70% of Crimeans consistently declared their preference to join Russia. Particularly after seeing how NATO had used military force to support Kosovo’s break with Serbia to become an independent state, Putin showed little concern over international protests that Russian troops were violating the territorial integrity of ‘a sovereign nation by occupying Crimea.

Putin also simultaneously stoked the Russian ethnic uprisings in the region of eastern Ukraine. The protests quickly escalated into fighting between the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk republics and the Kiev government. On August 22, 2014, Kiev accused Russia of openly invading Ukraine. The Donbass conflict has been brewing for seven years now. Russian troops, exceeding 100,000, are currently massing along the border area of ​​Donbass, raising fears that Russia is launching a large-scale invasion.

As George Kennan warned decades ago in his Long Telegram, Russia’s “neurotic” worldview emanates from a “traditional and instinctive Russian sense of insecurity” about its borders. Particularly after Russia’s invasion of Georgia, Washington and Brussels should have considered that changing the status quo by bringing Ukraine into the status of association with the EU, combined with promises of definitive membership in the EU. NATO, could trigger an extreme Russian reaction. Instead, the European Union, backed by the United States, has largely exaggerated its hand, leading to a diplomatic debacle for stability in the region.

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Union-dominated works councils pitting Ford workers in Germany and Spain against each other for jobs Fri, 17 Dec 2021 22:57:19 +0000

The coming holidays will be a time of uncertainty and worry for more than 10,000 Ford workers in Sarrelouis and Valence. Indeed, the management of Ford has called on factories in Germany and Spain to present their proposals for reductions and savings by January 27, 2022. The most efficient site in terms of costs will win the contract for construction of a new model car. The decision must be made by June 30, 2022.

Like all automakers, Ford is in the process of converting its production to electric vehicles. From 2030, Ford plans to produce only electric vehicles in Europe. Since the production of combustion-engine cars is significantly more complex than that of electric-powered vehicles, all auto companies are planning massive job cuts.

Shift change at Ford Saarlouis (Photo: WSWS Media)

The mechanism used in this process in Europe has been in use for decades. The workers of the different sites are pitted against each other by the management of the company and the unions via the works councils. The works councils of the Ford plants in Sarrelouis, in Germany, and in Almussafes (Valencia, in Spain), are currently engaged in regular negotiations with their management to reduce costs and thus outperform the competing site in a call for internal offers. The concessions thus extorted would then have the aim of “securing the site”. But so far, such concessions have only paved the way for factories to close.

More than 50 years ago (1970), the first car, a Ford Escort, rolled off the production line at the Saarlouis factory, where not so long ago more than 7,000 workers worked. In 2019, more than 2,000 jobs in Saarlouis were victims of a restructuring program that saw Ford cut 25,000 jobs worldwide, including 12,000 in Europe and more than 5,000 in Germany.

The Saarlouis works council and the IG Metall union have agreed to cut the night shift in 2019, cutting 1,800 jobs. Another 600 jobs were cut this year, leaving fewer than 5,000 employees who exclusively make the Ford Focus. Production of this model is expected to end in mid-2025.

The Valence plant celebrates its 45th anniversary. Production began there in 1976 with the Ford Fiesta, which did not end until 2012. A dozen different models have been built there over the past decades. In the best years, 9,000 workers produced up to 450,000 vehicles per year. Today, there are just under 6,000 workers on two production lines that build the Mondeo, Galaxy and S-Max, as well as the Kuga and Transit van. Currently, the production of the Mondeo, Galaxy and S-Max only works as a single shift due to declining demand.